Monday, April 01, 2019

flatten out that paper!

I get asked so many questions about what kinds of paper I use for my drawing and painting process...and honestly, I will use just about anything! From expensive to archival to cheap or thin paper, when I am feeling creative I will grab whatever paper I have on hand. 

I spent years living on a budget and barely having enough money to buy art supplies so I would always use what I had available. Often the only paper I could afford was cheap drawing paper or printer paper and I made the most of it and used it with all kinds of different supplies.Thankfully these days I have the budget to buy a variety of quality watercolor paper but I still end up using printer paper or thin drawing paper when I am experimenting with ideas. 

The problem with using thin paper with wet media is that the paper can act really weird. Drawing paper or even printer paper is not designed to work with water or wet media so all kinds of strange things can happen- buckling, bleeding, peeling or getting soaked with all those supplies.

While these types of issues can be frustrating to deal with, sometimes thin paper is all you have on hand or all you can afford. And in my opinion it's pretty easy to work around by ironing the buckles and wrinkles out of your paper. 

Since I spend a lot of time playing with color, experimenting and exploring ideas, I typically use cheap drawing paper and yes, it buckles and wrinkles on me. While those imperfections don't always bother me, I do like to draw over the top of my messy color and it helps to have a smooth surface. 

When my surface is completely dry, I use my iron (that I only use for crafting) and lightly move it over my paper. Sometimes, depending on the paper, I will place an old rag over the top of my paper to keep it from getting too hot. 

While I am never able to get that paper completely perfect and smooth, I am able to flatten it out enough to be able to use it for drawing. And yes you can iron paper! It's a super simple solution but one that seems to surprise people when I share it!

Using wet media on thin paper will never be a perfect combination but it's totally possible and sometimes the only option that is available. So let's stop being so precious about those supplies and instead get lost in the creative process!

1 comment:

Kerri said...

Thank you so much for the sentiment behind this post. Sometimes as an artist I get lost in trying to be "official" or legit by getting too concerned with what supplies I'm using. Experimenting with what's on hand is a good habit. Thanks for the reminder!


Related Posts with Thumbnails